Tergar Lineage

The concept of “lineage” in Buddhism refers to the chain of transmission in which teachings are passed from teacher to student over the course of generations. Dozens of lineages have evolved within the Buddhist world and all share common roots, yet each has unique distinguishing features both in its expression of philosophical models and in the methods that are emphasized. This diversity of approaches is regarded as a great asset, considering the diversity of beings and their widely varying needs, capacities, and proclivities.

Though the concept of lineage can appear foreign in the modern world, lineages serve a number of purposes. Most importantly, spiritual lineages preserve the accumulated wisdom and experience of countless individuals so that each new generation does not have to reinvent the wheel when it comes to the process of awakening. Lineages also help preserve the integrity of the teachings, ensuring that those who guide others along the spiritual path are themselves sufficiently grounded in wisdom and compassion.

The Tergar lineage of Mingyur Rinpoche is primarily situated within the Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism, but also draws from the Nyingma lineage.

The following pages describe the spiritual lineages of the Tergar Community and provide information about Mingyur Rinpoche’s main teachers.

The Kagyu Lineage

The teachings of the Kagyu lineage stretch back to ancient India and were brought to Tibet in the eleventh century by the great translator Marpa. This lineage is especially known for its meditative practices and tradition of retreat. Read more…

The Nyingma Lineage

The Nyingma school is oldest lineage of Tibetan Buddhism. The Nyingma teachings were first brought to Tibet during the reign of King Trisong Deutsen in the eighth century, beginning a transmission of the Buddha’s teachings that continued into the ninth century. Read more…

History of the Tergar Lineage

Ter is a Tibetan word for treasure, referring to the wisdom and methods that lead to the alleviation of suffering, the activation of our greatest potential, and ultimately to complete enlightenment. Gar means gathering and can connote bringing many people or elements together. Tergar can thus be understood as a place where people come together to find this sublime treasure, or as the coalescence of the causes and conditions enabling this transformational process of discovery. Read more…

Tergar Lineage Today

Mingyur Rinpoche’s aspiration is to make the profound study and practice traditions of the Tergar Lineage accessible to both Buddhists and non-Buddhists, including those with busy modern lifestyles, so that the teachings could benefit as many people as possible. Read more…

His Holiness the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa

The Karmapas are the spiritual leaders of the Karma Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism and the oldest line of reincarnate lamas in Tibet. The current Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, was born in eastern Tibet in 1985 and was recognized as the 17th Karmapa at age seven. Though still in his twenties, the Karmapa is an extraordinary spiritual teacher with students all over the world. In addition to his role as head of the Kagyu lineage, he is also a gifted painter and poet, a passionate environmentalist, and an outspoken vegetarian. His tireless efforts to uphold the teachings of Tibetan Buddhism are breathing new life into this ancient tradition. Read more…

Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche’s Four Main Spiritual Teachers

 

Khenting Tai Situ Rinpoche

The present 12th Tai Situpa is a Buddhist master of the Karma Kagyu tradition. He was one of the closest students of the 16th Gyalwang Karmapa, and in turn became the main Mahamudra guru of the current and 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje. Situ Rinpoche oversees a vast network of Karma Kagyu monasteries, retreat centers, and Dharma centers worldwide, and has made great contributions toward training the next generation of Buddhist masters. He is also a scholar, poet, calligrapher, artist, author, architect, and geomancer. Read more…

Saljey Rinpoche

Saljey Rinpoche was one of the most renowned meditators of the Kagyu lineage, a consummate yogi who spent half his life in retreat, and a deeply learned scholar who taught many of the prominent Kagyu lamas teaching actively today. He was especially known for his deep meditative realization, born of the many years he spent meditating in strict retreat, and his mastery of Mahamudra and the Six Yogas of Naropa, two of the most profound teachings of the Kagyu lineage. Read more…

Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche

A twentieth-century lama bridging the Kagyu and Nyingma lineages, Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche was considered one of the greatest meditation masters of his time. He taught meditation to people of all backgrounds and beliefs. His hallmark as a teacher was to begin by pointing out the mind’s true nature of luminous purity, and to then teach the entire spiritual path as a way to fully integrate the recognition of the nature of the mind. Tulku Urgyen was Mingyur Rinpoche’s father and first teacher. Read more…

Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche

A revered Tibetan meditation master, scholar, and poet, Nyoshul Khenpo’s extraordinary presence and brilliant teaching style had a profound impact on the current generation of Tibetan lamas and on western Buddhist teachers alike. He was a principal lineage holder in the Rime (nonsectarian) movement and an authority on the teachings of the Nyingma master Longchenpa. Read more…